Published: 2017-09-11 11:00:00
Updated: 2017-09-12 13:10:50
Posted September 11
Updated September 12
Raleigh, N.C. — Irma weakened to a a tropical depression on Monday night, and its threat on central North Carolina remains very minimal.
Rain moved into North Carolina on Monday and will stick around overnight and into Tuesday, according to WRAL Chief Meteorologist Greg Fishel. The risk for severe weather remains low.
"Tonight, we will get wet. We will have some rain and a little bit of a breeze," Fishel said.
The storm's latest path means the western half of North Carolina could experience high winds and even some flash flooding into Tuesday.
Winds may continue to gust around 35 to 45 mph on Monday evening, especially south and west of the Triangle, but Fishel says the threat is minimal. "We're not even going to see the kinds of winds we'd see in some severe thunderstorms here," he said.
The western portion of the state will be more affected than the Triangle, with 2 to 8 inches of rain and wind gusts from 40 to 70 mph expected.
"There is likely to be rain across the entire area as we head into the overnight hours," Fishel said.
During a news conference on Monday afternoon, Gov. Roy Cooper said the state remains ready.
"We’re grateful that the brunt of the storm will miss us," he said. “Things are looking better for North Carolina, but we’re not out of the woods yet and we don’t want any surprises.”
In Charlotte, clouds hung low in the sky and spotty rain was prevalent on Monday afternoon.
The National Guard has positioned soldiers and equipment in Greensboro, Charlotte and Asheville to support storm response activities such as cleanup, shelter operations and supply delivery, if necessary, Cooper said.
A Red Cross shelter was opened at the former J.M. Alexander Middle School in Huntersville.
Temperatures will remain cool overnight, but will warm up again on Tuesday. Tuesday will be mostly cloudy and windy with bands of showers associated with Irma still in the area. Highs will be in the mid to upper 70s.
Once the effects of the storm move away, sunshine will return Wednesday. Highs will be much warmer, in the mid-80s, and only a small chance for rain and storms will linger.